Fancy a game of X Factor Live Show bingo? Here are 40 things that happen every time the billion or so hopefuls are whittled down to the final handful. Spot them! Tick them off! It might make the end come quicker! Although probably not!
1. Dermot taunts you by saying, "Your weekend starts here". You realise that it definitely doesn't and that you're severely wasting your life away.
2. The judges are introduced in a suitably long and self-serving montage, just in case you started to think that this show was about the contestants, or the music.
3. It's at least 15-minutes in and nobody has sung a single note.
4. Dermot asks the judges a simple question, and they respond with the same bewilderment as a grandmother being shown the workings of an iPad.
5. Each act shows off their new makeover, if you call bleaching your teeth and being dumped in River Island for a couple of hours "a makeover."
6. The contestants all take to the stage for a group song looking like they've all accidentally turned up on the same awkward Tinder date.
7. The first singer is described as being brave for going first, even though they had absolutely no say in the matter.
8. Cheryl waits for the crowd to stop applauding before she gives her critique, because blatantly whatever she says is going to change how you see the world forever.
9. Cheryl fails to say something that is going to change how you see the world forever.
10. Louis Walsh breaks into seemingly never-ending chain of meaningless superlatives to describe a ropey cover of something by Kelly Clarkson.
11. One of the contestants is described as a real artist because they performed with a guitar and knew most of the chords to Wonderwall.
12. Dermot says "Buddy" and wraps his chimpy little arms around someone.
13. One of the judges says that they're looking for a "recording artist", just to make clear that they don't need a painter for a gallery opening.
14. A troubled singer says they're only on the show because they want to change somebody else's life... just in case you think they're interested in making money for themselves.
15. Cowell tells a contestant, "Good for you" with all the patronising praise of a parent who has just been presented with a terrible drawing of a tree by their least favourite son.
16. Mel B starts dancing because apparently that's a thing.
17. A judge carefully describes a performance as "fun" in much the same way as somebody fat is carefully described as "bubbly".
18. It's only halfway through, and you've started to look forward to the adverts because you find it a nice break from all the unrelenting commercialism.
19. An act's perfectly normal job is demeaned in a way that makes anyone who stacks shelves for a living sound like a mix between a village idiot, and Terry Waite when he was held captive.
20. Simon Cowell winks at a contestant, which comes across a billion times more creepy now he's a dad.
21. A judge has an argument with another judge over their act, even though they both know that the act in question will only ever sell records if they go to work in HMV.
22. During a performance, a beam of light shines behind a singer's head. You briefly wonder if they're Jesus, but then you realise it's just a pub singer murdering Coldplay.
23. A contestant's age is brought up, either positively if they are under 20 ("He's only 16..."), or negatively if they are over 27 ("It's my last chance...").
24. After a performance, one of the judges says, "This is why I do this show," momentarily forgetting that it's actually just about the money.
25. The audience boos a judge, which is a totally appropriate response to multi-millionaires laughing at the dreams of somebody who works in Aldi.
26. Simon Cowell says this year is the best talent he's ever worked with. Not surprising coming from the man behind Mr Blobby and Robson & Jerome.
27. An act tells Dermot that they welcome the judge's constructive feedback, even though it was about as constructive as trying to build a rope ladder from wet toilet paper.
28. The word "journey" is used. Endlessly.
29. Someone blindly makes a reference to a decidedly average performance as being the "performance of the night" or, worse, "the performance the series".
30. Mel B and Cheryl start arguing completely and utterly unprovoked.
31. In a plea to get you to vote, an act mimes holding a phone. Those mime skills will one day come in handy when they're a street performer in Covent Garden, entertaining literally tens of people.
32. Mel B tells an act that they "look like a popstar", which is obviously the main thing in a singing contest.
33. Louis' song choice is ridiculed. Endlessly.
34. A guest singer pretends that they've been watching the show, only managing to vaguely name one act while wearing the expression of somebody trying to remember if they left the porch light on.
35. Slow and sad music is played for a sob story because, when you think about it, their story isn't really that sad.
36. Dermot tells the judges, "I've got to hurry you." Not because they're running out of time, but because he finds the whole process as tedious as we do.
37. A judge fails to judge, which is really the one thing their job requires.
38. The four judges reach Deadlock, and the Deadlock sound effect is easily the best sound you've heard all weekend.
39. The canned act's montage of best bits heartbreakingly features the dossier of lies the judges initially told them about how they were going to change their life forever.
40. Dermot finishes by pleading with you to switch over to The Xtra Factor in much the same way as a mate who wants you to attend a house party on the other side of town for someone you really don't like.
For more by Simon Ward, visit simon-ward.co.uk.